Seattle Neighborhood Spotlight: Laurelhurst
Northeast of downtown Seattle is the prestigious and historic neighborhood of Laurelhurst. It’s a high-end neighborhood filled with beautiful, traditional homes, as well as new modern developments with wonderful views of the mountains and the waterfront, creating a surprising feeling of space and privacy so close to bustling downtown.
Much of Laurelhurst is a peninsula looking out to the east on Lake Washington and extending into Union Bay on the south side of the neighborhood. The west side the neighborhood runs up against the University of Washington and the University Village, while on the north side, the neighborhoods of Windermere and Sand Point form the boundary line.
The History of the Neighborhood
Much like many of the lakefront neighborhoods in east Seattle, the neighborhood of Laurelhurst was historically a summer campground for Duwamish Native Americans. The Duwamish used it seasonally until they were removed to a nearby reservation in 1855. Despite the development since that time, the area has continued to abound with native flora and fauna that have adjusted over time to the conditions of urban Seattle.
Colonists slowly began to arrive some years after the Duwamish left. The area of that wooded peninsula filled with life was named Laurelhurst in 1906 when real estate developers came and began the process of making the neighborhood what it is today.
Wonderful Schools and Shopping
Laurelhurst has been one of Seattle’s most attractive places to live, primarily because of the beautiful green areas and waterfront property, the fantastic schools (including, but not limited to, the University of Washington), and excellent public transport. Commutes into downtown can be rough by car, but public transportation is an easy option in the area.
The Children’s Orthopedic Hospital in Laurelhurst, standing where the Pacific Theological Seminary once stood, was one of the first hospitals to tailor treatment in an environment created especially for children patients. The hospital was founded in 1907 but moved to Laurelhurst in 1953. All of its founders were women and the Board of Trustees to this day is entirely made up of women.
High Quality Dining
There are many excellent businesses that compete for locations throughout Laurelhurst, and that includes restaurants. Varlamos Pizzeria on NE 45th Street is a popular local spot, and Marlai Thai Cuisine is a local classic that’s been serving Laurelhurst for more than 20 years. With great local parks, a lively community, and fantastic drop-in cafes like Gretchen’s Place on Sand Point Way, there’s a lot to love in Laurelhurst.